Wednesday, May 02, 2018


The following is from Froebel and Education through Self-Activity by H. Courthope Bowen describing a conversation between Adolph Diesterweg and Friedrich Froebel:
The night was clear, bright, and starry, as they drove home from Inselsberg to Liebenstein, and the beauty of the heavens had set them talking. "No one of the heavenly bodies is isolated; every planet has its centre in the sun of its system. All the solar systems are in relation and continual interaction with one another. This is the condition of all life — everywhere mutual relation of parts. As there above, in great things, unbroken connection and harmony rule, so also here below, even in the smallest thing; everywhere there are the same order and harmony, because the same law rules everywhere, the one law of God, which expresses itself in thousand-fold many-sidedness, but in the last analysis is one, for God is himself the law." "That is what people call pantheism," remarked Diesterweg. "And very unjustly," rejoined Froebel; "I do not say, like the pantheists, that the world is God's body, that God dwells in it, as in a house, but that the spirit of God dwells and lives in nature, produces, fosters, and unfolds everything, as the common life principle. As the spirit of the artist is found again in his masterpieces, so must we find God's spirit (Geist) in his works."
The forest scene is in our side yard.

As Froebel believed and attempted to describe, using the language of his time, the world is an interconnected mechanism, a great harmony, so to speak. Scientists are discovering this to be true, even among what seem to be disconnected things. Trees standing in a forest are an example. Each is profoundly interconnected with its neighbor, and  if trees can be such a part of each other's lives why do we not build children's lives from that same understanding? I'll be talking about Friedrich Froebel's Kindergarten at the Unitarian Universalist Fellowship on this Sunday morning.

Last night we celebrated my good friend Hank Kaminsky as an Arkansas Living Treasure. Hank says gently of his work, "My sculptures are poems about the nature of god and the peace that comes from knowing that no matter how scattered or chaotic our understanding we are still connected to greater truths."

Make, fix, and create. Get good at it, express skill and share with each other.

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