Saturday, January 04, 2014

the power of the circle...

The quotation for January on Bill Coperthwaite's 2014 yurt calendar is from Black Elk Speaks and is related to Froebel's sense of the wholeness of the world, and the child's holistic relationship within it. The yurt is one of Bill's.
Everything the Power of the World does is done in a circle. The sky is round, and I have heard that the earth is round like a ball, and so are all the stars. The wind, in its greatest power, whirls. Birds make their nests in circles, for theirs is the same religion as ours. The sun comes forth and goes down again in a circle. The moon does the same, and both are round. Even the seasons form a great circle in their changing, and always come back again to where they were. The life of a man is a circle from childhood to childhood, and so it is in everything where power moves. Our tepees were round like the nests of birds and these were always set in a circle, the nation's hoop, a nest of many nests, where the Great Spirit meant for us to hatch our children. -- Black Elk
I've been reading William Heard Kilpatrick's criticism of Froebel's method and what he perceived as an undue fascination with the more mystical qualities of Froebel's Kindergarten. In Froebel's Kindergarten Principles, Critically Examined he asked,
Was Froebel a pantheist? — At the risk of violating the plan just laid down, it may to some prove interesting — if not otherwise valuable — to consider Froebel's conception of the relation of the universe to God. His statements will not appeal equally to all. Some will feel that the more personal aspect of Deity is lost in an all too pantheistic scheme. Others will doubt whether satisfactory scientific explanation can be read into the more or less vague and mystical relationships described in the Education of Man. This latter group will ask what scientific relationship is meant by the statement that "the divine [element] acting in each thing is the essence of each thing". An essence, these will say, as here used, is a medieval conception foreign to the modern mind. Still a third group will object that the author has too much to say concerning ultimates, conceptions which in the opinion of this group belong to bygone stages of thought.
When it comes to learning, we must always remember that if everything was laid out in straight lines as so many want it to be, there would be no poetry. Bill would not have made yurts, and the earth would not travel around the sun.

Make, fix and create...


  1. Anonymous11:31 AM

    Thank you...I waited too long to send in my calendar order to Bill 'Time and Tide wait for no man (woman)'

  2. I think the yurt calendars can still be ordered from the Yurt Foundation, Bucks Harbor, Maine, 04618 Unfortunately, Bill will not be the one addressing the envelopes.