I just returned from a 10-day, ‘Parenting for a Peaceful World’ workshop tour, hosted by educational innovators: EDiversity. And I learned so much from the people of Hong Kong. What an electrifying time to be there. The mood for change is absolutely tectonic, you can see it in everyone’s eyes. I’ve never witnessed so many people thinking, feeling and yearning with one mind.
All but some of the older generation are tired of the traditional authoritarian, high-pressure ways. They are demanding choices, for themselves and for their children, creative self-expression in every sphere. Vibrant, diverse and revolutionary new educational approaches are springing up. They really ‘get’ it. ‘We have choices’ is the anthem, the guiding principle of seismic change. The Tiger Cub must play.
It was a profound privilege to have the Cantonese version of my book: ‘Parenting for a Peaceful World’ play a key role in this social-evolutionary moment in Hong Kong.
Great news! Finally, my new book: ‘Inner Child Journeys – how our children grow us up’ is born – and ready to see the world! You’re invited to join me in celebration of the Australian launch, to listen to a talk about the themes of my book, a little reading, some nibbles, a wee drink – and live music! The event is free but bookings are essential.
On the 18th September, 2019, South Africa became the 57th nation to completely prohibit the corporal punishment of children. Since all social violence begins at home and at school, this commitment to child protection will (as it has done in every other nation that did the same) bring a fall in rates of violence and crime. A welcome change!
Bravo Scotland, you’ve just become the 58th country to completely ban all corporal punishment of children – at home, at school, everywhere! You have joined Ireland and New Zealand, in becoming just the 3rd mostly English-speaking nation to have done so.
With 55 more nations committed to this change, I think we can safely say this: “to strike a child constitutes an act of domestic violence” – and this idea is now NORMAL. It’s a brave new world!
Does the advice to ‘sleep-train’ your baby make you … uncomfortable? Against all the conventions of developmental science, this practice is still being widely recommended. I’ve heard from countless mothers who are heartbroken by ‘controlled crying’ techniques foisted on them, fathers who are angered, and I often hear of awfully distressed babies. despite the ceaseless efforts of international baby-sleep experts, ‘controlled crying’ (under a host of different names) persists.
Good news: this Facebook group has been set up to support you with healthier advice, and the comfort of a hugely growing community of parents who have had it with the culture of denying babies their emotional needs.
Judging by the rapidly growing thousands who join, there must be an enormous level of discontent – and a huge level of devotion to peaceful and nurturing methods.
This is not a happy blog-post. South Australia just became the second last state to comprehensively ban the corporal punishment of children in schools – all schools. Do we say bravo to this, in the 21st century? Queensland, meanwhile, is the last state to allow religious schools to hit children.
Some context: beating children is illegal in the schools of over 130 countries, and illegal in the homes of 56 countries, where it is recognized as domestic violence. It’s fair to ask why Australia is such a laggard, why we hold on to this entitlement to smack the most vulnerable.
The world evolves, but Australia clings onto punishment. Retribution. Authoritarianism. Politically, we remain embedded in the past. Unreconciled, exploitative, hoarding. How we treat our children, they will treat the world.
I had a wonderful time chatting with Emily Giles from ‘Untaming Podcasts’, for a series called: ‘Rewild the CHild’. From the sublime to the comical, from the personal to the political, we unpacked ‘body-memory’; how our childhood experiences influence our relationships: both one-on-one and societally. How are we all affected? How can we awaken from the early memories that drive our perceptions and our behavior, and find freedom? If we can heal personally, can we also heal our societies at a time of environmental emergency?
These news could have far, far reaching implications. A profound paradigm shift is underway.
The first Surgeon-General in California, Dr Nadine Harris, is a leading advocate for the new understanding that our greatest diseases spring from emotional trauma in childhood. She will promote screening sick children for Adverse Childhood Experiences.
This is a huge game-changer! The beginning of the end of the ‘Pharmaceutical Theory of Everything’ – that makes a market from human sickness. It also marks a great leap forward in our awakening to the primacy of childhood in all human endeavour. Better policy for better childhoods.
It all has to start somewhere. But you have to admit: California is one hell of a somewhere!
Nadine Harris: you are a giant change-maker. May you be a domino. Check out her TED talk. Perfect summary of the gigantic, world-changing ACE study. The implications are utterly transformative, revolutionary. The end of the Drug Era, the beginning of health.