Saturday, 18 January 2020

Australia - work with the wisdom of the land.

I think Australian folk must now look at the situation, and understand that those areas that are damaged, the homes, businesses, the families and communities that suffered so greatly during the recent forest fire season (extended) need to be very much involved in and directing their recovery.

Government, The Australian State must provide total support, but not direction.

Bill Mollison, a man with a plan.

The Colonised, and a man with a plan, backed by a gun, he having being assimilated into the colonial system such that he guards his chained brothers, that they might not escape.

It is the lives of those people, in that land that must, given the context, set out future policy that will affect them directly - their autonomy and their love for the land has never been more important.

The State can and should maintain oversight, in it's role as a supporting agency -  this recovery work will need to be studied as it rolls out and adjusted as results emerge, and the local people must therefore have all of that information and be the core decision making group on overall policy as it affects them, their lands, their children into the future, and they deserve free unfettered access to the best skills and information available to support their decision making and efforts.

Local deliberative democracy.

Take a billion from each of Australia's billionaires - and weight it so they more they have, the more the contribute, so someone with 4 billion could drop half a billion someone with 14 billion could drop 2 billion, and not really be put out. 

The Australian Government has plenty of cash available, it's called Taxation and State borrowing..

So too does it's Oligarchy, if they paid all their taxes fairly.

Give each of them an award, a medal and some honourable title for helping out. Assuage their narcissism, and get that cash.

There's plenty of cash, and it doesn't need to be a profit seeking investment.

"Any profit taken where harms of any kind have been allowed, and the costs of resolving those harms has been deliberately or accidentally avoided, is a deceit."

The profit is happy people on happy land, developing a sustainable local economy.

They Australian folk really ought to be working with Aboriginal Culture and studying the dynamics of their cultural land sensitivity.

The Australian farmer, what ever is farmed must be supported to be re-skilled in perma-culture as one of many ways to engage proven tools of ecological rehabilitation.

 The spirit of community that is already there, and move it into the 21st Century, to create a culture of healthy land and healthy peoples.

In essence, all this to arrive again, and to meet the already here, and integrate into this ancient culture that is a relationship, rather than a skin colour or a ceremony, a living relationship with an abundant land.

Reverse the damage of 1788.

The introduction of healthy land use will necessitate bringing more people to the land to hand tend, instead of machines and robots and bio-cides.

The Australian State needs to cede Aboriginal title where there are existing Aboriginal communities on traditional lands. Let them be, for they are totally a valid lane tenure polity.

I am saying this direct to you, the folk of burned Australia, your friends and families, your neighbours and compatriots and commatriots.

This could help build the bridge among rural Australia that brings you back to the people you did not heed, to meet again, this time as sharers, carers, nurturers, rather than the descendants of conquerors, colonisers and settlers.

Kindest regards


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

Thank you for reading this blog. All we need to do is be really honest, responsive to the evidence we find,and ready to reassess when new evidence emerges. The rest is easy.

Wednesday, 15 January 2020

The Human Species is fine, it is the Culture that is the problem.

I have been thinking, reading, writing about hierarchically violent social and cultural behavioural characteristics for 30 years, dipping into the best work I could find, work done in the past, work being done today by serious, hardworking scientists, clinicians, practitioners and by trauma survivor populations.  This study is as much a study of myself and my lived experience in this culture I was born into. There are personal elements to this pursuit as well as global concerns. Being a survivor informs my study. These are my biases.

What I have learned is this:

When we study the evolution of the human neuro-endocrine system and how it functions, how it relates to our emotional state, our mental and physical health we discover something. It is 'designed' or 'evolved' through natural selection for optimal health. Being a bully or being bullied is not optimal health on any possible measure.

Egalitarian life was/is generally peaceful,  humanely beautiful, physically healthy, grounded in solid emotional attachment and matured healthy affective state self regulation which reduces incidence of lost tempers and general violence because egalitarian culture nurtures the default setting of trust which is the basis of co-operation. 

“The mutual-aid tendency in man has so remote an origin, and is so deeply interwoven with all the past evolution of the human race, that is has been maintained by mankind up to the present time, notwithstanding all vicissitudes of history."

Pytor Kropotkin was correct.
This will upset quite a few people within this culture where self regulation is so dysregulated more often than not, where bullying is deemed as a normal if unsavoury behaviour, where hierarchy of power and wealth is assumed to be natural to the human condition, where competition and war fare is accepted as natural behaviour.

They are not. They are entirely cultural dynamics.

The roots of life.

When we look to cellular life, we see the origins of complex life in the union of two different entities, for their mutual benefit, in the process known as endosymbiosis.
When we pay attention to the the discovery that our human digestion is dependent upon 1000 species of bacteria for it's efficacy, we see co-operation as a core element of how our bodies function.  Even our moods are dependent upon the activity and health of bacteria in our gut.

Fungi and Forests mutual aid community. Ants, Trees and Bacteria working together.

In a fascinating article in The Slate - What if Competition Isn’t As “Natural” As We Think?

"Scientists are slowly understanding collaboration’s role in biology, which might just help liberate our collective imagination in time to better address the climate crisis.

Darwin’s legacy aside, though, one critical takeaway from all this is that we must learn to recognize the impulse to naturalize a given human behavior as a political maneuver. Competition is not natural, or at least not more so than collaboration.

This insight could hardly come at a more opportune time. With our climate crisis mounting, we dearly need new ways to think about our relationships to the diverse entities that share our planet.
Far too many environmentalists assume that people, driven by innate self-interest, are bound to harm ecology, that we will inevitably clear-cut, extract, consume, so long as it gives us an advantage over the next guy.
This leaves us deeply disempowered, with few solutions to climate change outside limiting humanity’s impact through some kind of population control.
When competitive self-interest is revealed to be a mutable behavior, the causes of climate change come into greater clarity: not human nature, but an economic system that demands competition, that distributes resources such that a tiny elite can live tremendously carbon-intensive lifestyles while the rest of us struggle for a pittance.

Leaving competition behind, we can also imagine richer solutions: climate policies that problematize the tremendous wealth of the few, that build economies concerned with collective well-being and sustainability"

The default mode of healthy human species specific social behaviour is trust.
Unhealthy behaviour is not a biological norm.

The default mode of healthy human species social behaviour is emotional trust, which is initiated in utero, developed through birth, infancy and toddler-hood, maintained into childhood, youth and adulthood through loving, bonded relationships where power disparity is rarely, if ever, abused, where empathy, compassion and insight prevail. 

Co-operative culture is probably the default behavioural setting for the human species.

Such cultures - Egalitarian or Co-operative cultures - do not appear to have any generation gap, they do not bully children, they do not go to war, they do not rape or steal, they do not create and maintain power hierarchies, and as the study of endocrinology and neurology reveals, our bodies are superbly adapted to that healthy state as our normative state. 

That said, the study of such cultures shows that conflict resolution is standard practice, after all we are human and we can be moody, we can wake up feeling out of sorts, we can become insecure, angry, jealous or envious and those feelings can and do lead to misunderstandings which can then become a point of conflict. 

If conflicts cannot be resolved, then trouble brews, and the longer it brews, the deeper it's impact on our bodies and minds.  Chronic stress is a dis-ease vector and a killer.

The Bully is not a bio-logical behavioural default.

This paper outlines a cultural shift observed in a wild population of Forest Baboons. It indicates the element of culture as a learned, brain to brain transmitted behavioural dynamic or milieu that can be passed from generation to generation, learned from infancy (possibly prepared in utero by the conditions of the mothers lived condition) through direct experience and liminal absorbtion.

"Reports exist of transmission of culture in nonhuman primates. We examine this in a troop of savanna baboons studied since 1978. During the mid-1980s, half of the males died from tuberculosis; because of circumstances of the outbreak, it was more aggressive males who died, leaving a cohort of atypically unaggressive survivors. 

A decade later, these behavioral patterns persisted. Males leave their natal troops at adolescence; by the mid-1990s, no males remained who had resided in the troop a decade before. Thus, critically, the troop's unique culture was being adopted by new males joining the troop. 

We describe (a) features of this culture in the behavior of males, including high rates of grooming and affiliation with females and a “relaxed” dominance hierarchy; (b) physiological measures suggesting less stress among low-ranking males; (c) models explaining transmission of this culture; and (d) data testing these models, centered around treatment of transfer males by resident females."

Here we see a clear example of a culture shift, a change in behaviour that emerges across an entire population of primates.

What this suggests to me is that the concept of the Violent Alpha Male as a biological archetype is more likely a projection of the hierarchically conditioned mind, a bully culture, rather than an inevitable, biological default or archetype.

Wolves in captivity are not wolves in the wild.

The term Alpha Male was coined to describe 'what happens in wolf packs'. However that 'observation' was crafted from within a prison, and blown apart as a theory in the wild. It originated from a study of male wolves in a zoo enclosure, an entirely un-natural set-up. Wolf packs are families, with Mom and Pop and their litter.  Wolves do not hang out in all single male groups ever. That never happens in the wild. One way to look at the study claiming Alpha Male wolves as an archetype is to think of a bunch of males in a prison. What kind of culture exists there?

When the same researchers went into the wild, they tried again, but did not spend much time observing in detail or taking blood samples, stool samples etc and stuck to the Alpha Male theory. Then some years later they returned to the wild, and this time spent a lot more time, gathering a lot more detail, until they finally understood that wolf packs were families, and in place of an Alpha Male they had Father Wolf, Mother Wolf and the family, and the children all had different characters, different skill sets and abilities and they all worked as a team using those differences to maximise their success. 

Culture is, as it turns out. a mammalian dynamic, and co-operation prevails.

Co-operation is normative to all and often between species.

The concept of a 'Struggle for Survival' biological competition as the archetype of biology is a dystopian fairy tale, the  projection myth of an insecure bully culture. No such thing exists. It's a way of looking at the world, rather than an observation.

The way our endocrine system functions proves this beyond all reasonable doubt. We get stressed when we get bullied, and when it becomes chronic that stress causes a wide range of physiological distortions and breakdowns. We are not 'designed' for chronic stress. It happens, yes, and it hurts and harms us long term.

Occasional stress is normal to all biology because the habitat is a dynamic environment, where changes occur, accidents happen and things can go wrong. If follows that being able to cope with the stress and return to homeostasis or balance is essential - and we see this all the time. Recovery and healing happens.

This is confirmed knowledge, tested profoundly. This is not belief.

We do not need to hang on to our negative beliefs about 'Humanity'  or the 'Human Condition'- they are just beliefs, and they confer no accuracy of perception.

The Biology Never Lies.

Biology does information rather than belief. 

Evidence matters.

Me matters. The Personal matters.

I think that for me, it started out with the evidence of my own subjective experience. Learning to be less subjective required that I step away a little from myself so that I could see the subjective rather than be overwhelmed by it all. I did not realise I was reeling from the trauma of my childhood, and when I did, in my late 30s, I started to very slowly develop more empathy for the child I was in the situation I was in. Very slowly.

Part of my 'learning' is the lived experience, examined in hind sight, often with less than 20/20 vision. 

The lived experience of surviving long term abuse as a child, and dealing with the invisible affects as they emerged, whilst living in a bully society. I am not alone in this, not at all unique.

Part of my 'learning' has been muddling through, barely coping with depression, heartache, shame, self loathing, bullying, confusion, loss, despair. Part of my 'learning' has been resilience, dogged persistence, withdrawal and the creation of an inner fortress, a form of denial in that I understood I had grown up traumatised yet I pretended it did not afflict me as much as it had, because I could not remember much, because I was not ready to deal with it. Millions of people endure this learning across the bully culture. It's all quite sad, and it's painful.

Part of my 'learning' has been reading, studying and learning from what others had to present, by way of evidence and insight. Part of my 'learning' has been through counselling and the heartfelt advice and support of close friends. Millions of people are going through this every day.

Crucially when I began to see the Social Material realities of where I was born into for what they were  - as a culture so much larger than I - I began to realise that I was, we all are, living in a bully social system. Millions of people are grappling with this realisation emerging in our lives.

I began to understand more of why I had been made to live through all of that, how everyone is living through all of that.

This awareness among the population is  growing : the Hierarchy of Power culture is inherently toxic, and it has no natural mandate.

It is sustaining a traumatising chronic stress dis-ease dynamic.

I will repeat my basic theme. The Human Species is perfectly evolved for healthy attachment, bonding, co-operation, creative intelligence as part of 'natural' behavioural dynamics of a species living in and on Earths surface. I am perfectly evolved for the co-operative culture but have been conditioned by the lived experience of growing up in this dominator culture.

As a neo-nate my brain was ready for the egalitarian lived experience yet it met the hierarchy of wealth and power experience and that changed the trajectory.

In my case, I was born a month premature, as a Rhesus baby endured a full blood transfusion without anaesthetic and started life in an incubator for two months. A whole range of biologically mandated expectations, needs that are core to the building of behavioural and neurological pathways were never met even as the doctors and nurses fought to save my life. The NHS saved my life. I am ever grateful for that State funded co-operative movement.

That was just the start. 

This hour long video presentation of a lecture by Allan Schore examines what we call attachment theory, informed by advances in scientific ability to observe detailed processes within our brains, our endocrine systems and our bodies as we grow. 

What Schore calls the brain-to-brain relationship is revealed in some detail and lends itself to the understanding of brain development and affective state self regulation in utero and in infancy that is the world of carer and child, mother and infant in those earliest, most intimate relating to one another experiences, so much without words, so deeply limbic and yet absolutely crucial to the future emotional condition of the adult to be.  

It is important to understand that even though we do not remember the detail of our experiences as neo-nates and infants. all of that experience is written into our bodies. That means much of what determines our adult emotional state is hidden from our awareness, is 'sub-conscious'. Cultures roots lie in the mists of vague memory.

Allan Schore gives a presentation on aspects of emotional development, in terms of the brain-to-brain dynamics and neurobiology of the interaction between carer, most often the mother, and the cared for infant.

Whatever the situation, the behavioural dynamic of healthy egalitarian culture has to be learned, by experience and exposure, each generation learning from the previous. Trauma and chronic stress and oppression tend to distort this learning, Violent cultures intervene in the learning - we call it 'education' set within an authoritarian hierarchy system called school - to assure the concepts of authority and it's right to exercise violence for the preservation of social order is habituated to. Sparta being the classic example.

More is being understood about this, by more and more people, as research into the biology of behaviour has made huge progress in the past 30 years.

Learning all the time.

This work that is being undertaken, diligently and seriously by many brilliant and committed people, away from the spotlights, the stages, the accolades of celebrity, work that is seeking to understand, contextualise and heal social violence, oppression, hierarchy and abuse of power is beyond any single life time; it was there before, and will be there after I or any of my readers have been long forgotten, because it is a historical process of recovery.

As is often the case the leaders of the Dominator culture have dismissed the profoundly healthy humane realities of  the older egalitarian cultures - which they call primitive or barbarian -  cultures which form the bulk of human lived experience.

They dismissed the default biologically mandated modality for co-operative human culture because it poses a threat to the Dominator culture. We can see this today in the prevalence of what is known as Free Market Fundamentalism. A culture that pretends that human society does not really exist, that meritocracy is the natural state and that those who are wealthy are innately superior to those who are poor, whilst they ignore the fact that their wealth is precisely what generates poverty for so many others.  A bully cult.

Evidence of a community grounded in healthy attachment relationships where affective state self regulation is matured by the time each reaches toddlerhood - presenting as healthy cultures that experienced no generation gaps, no organised mass warfare, no widespread sexual abuse of children or adults, cultures that thrived through healthy relationships with one another and with their habitat, for many, many tens of thousands of years, and in significant numbers

I mark my life by the quality of the relationships within which I am embedded - are they nurturant or are they destructive?

I ask the question - why not a nurturant culture? What is impeding the development of such a culture?

This work is not an evolution, and it is certainly not a revolutionary process, it is a process of recovery of healthy relationships. The evolution of the co-operative species and our culture has already been long complete. The linear model of 'progress' is in adequate to this task which all of us face going forward in our lives.

Dominance is the language of the bully. 

Coping is the language of the bullied, who cannot escape.

Revolution is the language of the status quo.  Exchanging one Power for another.

Healing is the language of healthy human behaviour.

Reducing Power disparity abuse is a prerequisite for healing and recovery from trauma.

The defining indicator, a predictor if all other data is unavailable, of a bully culture is how the institutions, the social structures and the adults relate to and treat the children. Authoritarian control, punishment/reward dynamics to assure compliance, children as projections of parents desires and perceived needs.

The defining indicator of a egalitarian culture's character is how they relate to and treat the children. Autonomy and loving, shared responsibility.

It really is a matter of existing and imposed power disparity, and who uses or abuses it under what conditions.

It has nothing to do with 'species' and everything to do with culture.

Humanity is not the problem, it is the solution.

Healing is possible, to a large degree.

Healing and recovery are biological mandates.

We live in a traumatising and traumatised culture.

The Trauma transmission is layered - Violent Hierarchies study the effects of poverty and violence on a population, to know how to exploit people's pain to maintain loyalty to the system, and to be able to continue to wage war. That is deliberate. They cause trauma deliberately.

The lived experience - ordinary folk whose lives are afflicted by the actions and behaviour of Power, ordinary folk who are caught in the crossfire of war, economic sanctions, impoverishment, who have to flee on foot, who are offered no genuine support (veterans, refugees, the no income, low income poor for example)

People are mostly are just doing the best they can to keep a lid on that chronic stress burden, so that they can look after themselves and their children.

Nonetheless there will be varying degrees of trauma behavioural transmission, and epi-genetic changes that disrupt development and behaviour, that are NOT the fault of those people, there is no malice there, and it must be understood that dynamic will impact every person affected in profound and long term ways.

The malice emerges as powerful States refuse to acknowledge this, because they are engaged in a competitive power struggle dominated by the most powerful military states, who seek dominance, globally. Obama 'twisting arms'.

I know of Indigenous groups who protected their native lands by defending with spears and arrows, guile and forest skills, who faced down Loggers, Miners, Farmers, Oil drillers and others who had guns, and no problem with using them to kill.

Decades passed and people were murdered on both sides.

Then, eventually when the defence of their lands and cultures ceased being 'operational', when they had manage to slow down the intrusions and find external international and national support for legislation to protect their lands, they withdrew and they deliberately went through a slow multi-generational healing process, so that they do not carry the wounds forwards... they did not want to become like the invaders, numbed through their own wounds.

They chose, as a community of adults, to heal. That is a fine example of biological conscious awareness and courage. That is highly evolved healthy human behaviour.

Those same groups are still facing invasion, assimilation and violence : they are stressed to the limit, because their shared habitats are under still threat, and yet they offer insight, they offer wisdom rather than seeking revenge.

The Human Species is fine, it's the culture that is the problem.

You are NOT your culture.

I am not the culture.

Therefore I will not let it be a trap that robs me of my sensitivity and humanity.
I will not let it undermine my determination to nurture the world around me, to nurture all people, our shared habitat, the common environment. Determination goes where hope falters.

Co-operation is what allowed our human species to thrive, more than any other single factor - and the evolved level of cooperation is based on healthy attachment bonding as a core element of psychological and social arrangement.

The natural society is grounded in the natural child's needs being met in full.

Bullying disrupts that and is the at the root of much harmful behaviour.

Dominator cultures are wiping out Egalitarian cultures.

If we want a future as a species, it has to be Egalitarian.

The work then is to confront the bully cult, disarm it, recover healthy relationships across all our cultures. This is doable

Kindest regards


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

Thank you for reading this blog. All we need to do is be really honest, responsive to the evidence we find,and ready to reassess when new evidence emerges. The rest is easy

Sunday, 5 January 2020

If we had been listening to the old, old peoples, we probably wouldn't be standing in this mess.

First People's

Axiom Poem

"If we had ever listened to   
the old, old peoples,
we would not be in this mess,
right now!"

I have been hearing the ancestors all my life,
heeding their call.

Others, born before me, and after,
have put me and kept me in this mess.
They call it civilisation.

Others, born before me, and after,
are doing their best to clean up this mess.
They call it living well.

"We are the forest, 
we are the rivers and the valleys, 
we are the weathered rocks, 
we are the trees, 
we are the roots and vines, 
the creatures are our neighbours, 
and we theirs.
living together, 
in a shared living space. 
we all nurture together. 
We are the food we eat. 
Knowing this, our intelligence, 
our sensitivity and 
our love is what makes us truly healthy human
in this place.."

We will tidy up the mess, if you let us.
We will help you heal, if you want to come home.
We will care for you, we will nurture you.
Oligarch, Pope, President or Prime Minister, Slave or Worker,
Your status not really matter,
Our intention is not sinister.

This is the generosity of ancient cultures,
Who have seen so much you do not know,
Calling to your heart and ears -

"Listen! We have much to show you,
and you have much laughter ahead,
when you heal the bully behaviour.
then you can safely rest your heart,
unworry your head.".

This is the generosity of ancient cultures,
Who have seen so much you do not know,
Calling to your heart and ears -

"Listen! We have much to show you,
and you have much growth and love ahead,
when you heal the bully behaviour.
then you can safely rest your heart, unworry your head"

whisper in their hearts :

"unhealthy behaviour is not a biological norm".

Now it is also a song...


Kindest regards


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

Thank you for reading this blog. All we need to do is be genuinely honest, responsive to the evidence we find, and ready to reassess when new evidence emerges. The rest is easier .

Thursday, 2 January 2020

Bullies, Power and the child-mother bonding attachment.

When we study the evolution of the human neuro-endocrine system and how it functions we discover something.

Egalitarian life was generally peaceful,  beautiful, healthy, grounded in solid attachment and mature affective state self regulation which reduced incidence of lost tempers and general violence
This will trigger some people within a culture where self regulation is dysregulated more often than not.

Social Behavioural Characteristics of different cultures.

source :

Societal Social Behavioural Characteristics.

Different modes of society exist, ranging from egalitarian collectives to hierarchies of power. 

Egalitarian behaviour is healthy. 

Hierarchy behaviour is unhealthy.

People bully because they learn to bully

People demonstrate love because they learn to love.

Unhealthy behaviour is not a biological norm.

Healthy behaviour is a biological norm.

That is why egalitarian cultures exist, and have always existed.  

Biology would not create a species designed to be unhealthy.

Healthy peoeple do not abuse their power disparity over others, especially not over their own children, family, partners... they will use that power disparity to nurture, care for and protect, to demonstrate healthy bonding and love as a lived experneice.

Bullies always seek as much control over the bullied as possible, to the point that it is unhealthy for both bully and the bullied.

In cultures where socio-econimic status is thing, wealth gives a person more material power to than other persons who have no wealth.  A man with a sword and a man with a stick.

Vast wealth creates a much larger power disparity. A president commands an Army, and a civilian living in the pathway of the war that army is prosecuting is utterly powerless, and must flee.

This is not healthy behaviour.

Great Wealth as an institutional agency controls populations.

States, Dictators, Kings and Queens, Presidents and Prime Ministers have access to material power - through the institutions they dominate and through alliances with Oligarchy. It is access to those that allows them to transmit and project their 'power', without them they are ordinary folk, impotent in the face of immense power.

The ordinary citizen is rendered utterly powerless by the structure.

The power disparity is close to that of parent and infant.

All of this control is to remain in a powerful position, to maitain the power disparity - it's a fractal of existential insecurity.

If I do let go it will all fall to pieces, and they will eat me alive.

The person or Institution is unwilling, unable to let go of that material capability to exercise power to retain power. Thus they resist all attempts at healing, they resist all attempts to confront their abuses, they cover up, mask, deflect, distract...

Unhealthy behaviour is not a biological norm.

Or put it the other way.

Healthy behaviour is the biological norm.

That is not to say that disease does not exist.

Which begs the question.

Why do or how do some people learn to become bullies?

Before we go on i want to place two scientifically proven understandings before you, that are uncontested, incontrovertible data.

- disrupted child-mother bonding is more common in communities that are traumatised or subjected to chronic stress, and in cultures that are violent hierarchies than it is in healthy egalitarian communities.

- example - Trump, his infancy and childhood, plus the culture of his fathers corrupt businessm within the culture of U.S. which is a hierarchy of power and violence. He is someone who is unable to regulate his emotional outbursts.

- example - The vast majority of people in prison for violent crime have experienced childhood trauma, abuse that was never resolved.

These are people whose ability or willingness to control their emotional states is profoundly damaged.

Angry, violent, abusive, manipualtive, traumatised people.

And there are many more who are not in prison, whose damage goes 'un-noticed' and yet it is the object and subject of humour in sit-coms, rom-coms, heroic war movies and there is enough of low level loss of self regulation to generate a psychotherapy industrial complex that deals with the results of the psycho-marketing industrial complex that manipulates that loss of self regulation.

Self Regulation of Emotional State.

Living in the real world, a human organism has to be able to master his or her emotional states - for example, climbing a tree to access something entails taking the risk of the climb. That risk is something to be feared, yet one needs to control the fear to do the climb safely. It's not fearlessnes, it's the ability to self regulate the emotional state in order to get things done, to avoid falling.

Allan N. Schore is an American psychologist and researcher in the field of neuropsychology. His research has focused on affective neuroscience, neuropsychiatry, trauma theory, developmental psychology, attachment theory, pediatrics, infant mental health, psychoanalysis, psychotherapy, and behavioral biology

What he is presenting in the video below is an over view of the scientific learning and clinical experience of the past 40 years, in this field, which is  telling us more about how human neonates and babies and infants and toddlers develop emotional self regulation, sense of self and other social keys in the first 1000 days of life, starting at conception.

In the language of neurobiology, enodcrinology, epigenetics, nurtition, physiological and psychological development as it relates to mother-child

So yes, starting from conception.

What happens at the biological level?

We see now that the human brain is designed to be organised by how the person (a developing foetus is a person) experiences being alive. 

Environment and experience plays a major role in brain development, more so than genetics alone.

“The brain is heavily influenced by genes. But from birth through young adulthood, the part of the human brain that most defines us (frontal cortex) is less a product of the genes with which you started life than of what life has thrown at you. Because it is the least constrained by genes and most sculpted by experience. This must be so, to be the supremely complex social species that we are. Ironically, it seems that the genetic program of human brain development has evolved to, as much as possible, free the frontal cortext from genes.” 

Robert M. Sapolsky, Behave: The Biology of Humans at Our Best and Worst

The epigenetics  (the way that portions of the parents genes are switched on or off or disrupted by their lived experience) of the parents lived experience is passed through to the child, through genetic transmission. So even without any direct experience, the child carries markers of the changed genetic coding of their parents lived experience prior to conception.

At the same time, the lived experience of the mother is the ennvironment within which the foetus and the new brain develops, given those conditions which of course vary from mother to mother, from culture to culture.  Both develop within a cultural environment, that affects both child and parent.

Thus we see that brain development being elastic, that fluidity gives the developing human brain the widest scope for learning. There is very little in behaviour that is 'programmed', most of our behaviour is learned. We write the pathways of experience as we go. Experience programs us, yet not all is hard wired, it can be modulated, attenuated.

Because the human brain never stops learning or growing.

Think of it as a small brain growing inside the mother, relating to the mothers brain. Learning all the time. Developing all the time. Everyday in the womb becoming ready for the next stage, which is not a from scratch state. Hearing starts at 18 weeks, which means that listening starts soon after. That is to say paying attention to the sound, with a focus.

The sounds of the mothers body, the sounds of life close by, a washing machine, a waterfall, thunder, laughter, crying... someone inside is listening, a little person is learning, developing, reacting and responding.

A baby in the womb can be soothed, as much as the baby can be disturbed. The baby can respond to the mother. A biological conversation, in the language of hormone cascades, neurological pathways plays between both mother and child.

The new-born babies recognises the mothers voice, and those of close family members, the new born feels everything any adult would feel, yet has no language. Communication is by empathy, connectedness, skin to skin.

The caring of the mother initiates further emotional development  of the child as a separate autonomous being, and her care sustains that development for as long as it takes the child to mature, healthfully. This is the bioligical mandate for healthy development.

There are key experiential inter-relational dynamics between mother and baby, and later on between any care giver and child, that are essential to nurture the development of the child's emotional maturity, at the earliest stage possible.

Biologically this makes sense. As a thought experiment, try to imagine a group living on an ice flow, or in a desert, or a rain forest having to move about with a few children throwing tantrums, screaming in rage, running off in all directions, refusing to co-operate?

It doesn't happen in healthy communities.

So here is Allan Schore, and he puts it so much clearer than I could...

Alice Miller

In 1986, Alice Miller published "For your own good :The Roots of Violence in Child Rearing"

In this work she traced the childhood of Hitler, and the childhoods of other well known 'cases' - a serial killer (Jurgen Bartsch) and a heroin addict (Christiane F) and looked at the cultural background in Europe at that time, and the history of child punishment.

She examined the early childhoods of these three subjects, and drew correlations and causative lines from those, put into the wider social material context of Christian Europe as a war like culture, where traditional parenting was authoritarian, and adult to child sanction or punishment was the norm.

Miller looked at the history of Parenting as transmitted in books, from old and ancient manuscripts to the printed press and traced a line of instruction, from Sparta (spare the rod, spoil the child)  to Vienna (Frued, and the Oedipus Complex) in 1880s, to middle class parenting books in the 1930s.

The traditional view was based around the concept of breaking the wilfulness of the child - that child willfulness was seen as the gate through which the Devil or Evil or Badness could enter and corrupt the child, and it was the parents Christian responsibility to make sure that never happened because such people could disrupt the established order. Society demanded that the parent dominate the child's will, and 'rear' the child, 'raise' the child to be a good citizen.

This is a culture where Christianity is ubiquitous, and the vast majority truly believe and are influenced by the Christian psyche.

Thus for them, to fail to 'raise' the child to be a good Christian would put the entire social order out of balance.

Freud's betrayal.

Freud, for what ever reasons, placed the dangerous element within what he assumed was the child's innate lust or competition for the opposite sex parent. It was a quality of the child. A biological norm.

He made that up, obviously. He had no science or meaningfully observed and measured data, it was merely his plagiarism of Greek Mythology projected onto a crime no one was willing to acknowledge, not even he himself, in spite of the little evidence that he did have. That crime was upper middle class  fathers sexually exploiting their own daughters.

His client base was the daughters of upper middle class families, who came to his psycho-therapy sessions and told their stories. They told him what they had experienced.

When Freud presented a paper on this, his contemporaries rejected it, and him, outright.

Freud retreated, and wrote a new  paper, which is known as The Aetiology of Hysteria, in which he put the 'blame' on the child...

Freud was doing what his culture told him to do. Loyalty, fit in, do not disturb the established order.

He followed orders. Creatively.

Alice Miller argued that the way a culture treats the children feeds into the willingness across a population to 'follow' Authoritarian leaders, not least because the unresolved anger, pain and dispair of lived experience that remains unresolved generates a pressure that is intense albeit largely unconscious, and bullies, those who seek to exercise power over others know how to tap into that to manipulate a significant part of the population, enough to control the majority...

Within this the vast majority peaople remain basically decent, albeit prone to being manipulated by demagogues.

Then a significant percentage will become bullies, at what ever

Brexit, and the age divide, the parenting divide reflects this dynamic in part.

A generation raised in War and traditional Christian values vs a generation raised in relative peace and secular values grounded in Human Rights.

It's a part of the dynamic, not it's whole.

Blaming the victim is a core aspect of the division to conquer dynamic.

Kindest regards


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

Thank you for reading this blog. All we need to do is be really honest, responsive to the evidence we find,and ready to reassess when new evidence emerges. The rest is easy.