Saturday, January 29, 2011

Walls with books suitable for all ages and cozy places to read them.

My children have always done well on any kind of religious examination, but yet we've never sat down in any kind of formal study environment to teach them, as is often written of on other blogs.

I suspect the reason they've done well is because the Faith permeates our life at home, and so likewise does it permeate the discussions which is where the children in turn have learned their Faith. It's been a passive method, not unlike our walls lined with books.

The books are there. They're part of their lives, and they couldn't imagine it any other way.

Some families are serene and ordered where fallen nature seems to have virtually passed over them, - - - but not ours. Ours is Chaos. With fallen nature firmly entrenched in each and every one of us. And so perhaps our method of forming our children is more according to us, than anything else.

I like to look at our method of forming our children as hands-off Waldorf. Present them with the beautiful, give them the tools to pursue it, and let them wander about amongst it and absorb it.

I suppose when I say Waldorf, what I mean is the ordering towards the beautiful where each aspect and part is lovely and ordered. If you've ever stood in a yarn & needlepoint store simply luxuriating in textures and colours, that is Waldorf when combined with equal crafts, clothing, and Catholic traditions such as Candlemass.

I look at how Waldorf takes Catholic traditions and encompass them into their lives and art, and wonder if only they were Catholic? (I look at their schools and wonder if only they were less than $10,000 per student per year, but that's a different post)

And if they were Catholic, it would be their parish I would attend, it would of course also be the extraordinary form of the mass because their ordering is the same quiet love of the tactile intermixed with sign.

As it is, because they are pagans, Waldorf is akin to "the hippies of the 1960s 'who' did understand something. . ." What they have is Catholic in nature, but not typically recognized as Catholic.

What we all have by our nature is a sense of the poetic, that each part of God's creation signifies, and sometimes with multiple significations. We recognize them intuitively, such as when building placing stones below & lighter structures above and we feel uncomfortable when they are reversed. Or the translucency of light as signifying the immaterial. It's also why books and cozy places to read them has such a strong signification. We recognize it intuitively, but also because we have memory of those cozy places which reinforces the intuitive.

We have also, unfortunately, lost a sense of the poetic and are blind to much of what we should intuitively grasp, where we see vaguely what we feel intuitively we should be able to see more clearly. Art is in the artist according to the muse, but the art must be practiced in earnest for it to be perfected. The same is true with our poetic intuitive selves.

Our earnest practice doesn't mean exertions such as playing a musical instrument, although that is also important, but creating a holistic environment because formation can't be isolated into this and that act or event. It's a totality, where we passively absorb, where it permeates our environment and we in turn become our environment.


  1. +JMJ+

    Is this finished? I'm asking because I read this when it was much shorter.

    I'm glad you wrote more about Waldorf education. Several years ago, I was very excited about it and almost applied to Manila Waldorf School--but I don't think I've thought about it in years.

  2. I suppose it's finished. I might come back and fix it up a bit. But I don't want to make it any longer. I want my posts to be readable in a short span of time.

    My writing is a lot like B movies where they came up with the title and promotional poster first, and then wrote the movie to fit it.

    "I was a teenage werewolf"
    or "Beach blanket bingo" where Annette was the promotional poster.

    I write the opening sentence or two, with a fun title, and after that, I just see where it goes.