Children represent the future of humankind. Yet when they come into the world, children are so precious and so fragile at the same time. Why does it take about eighteen years of hard and persistent labor to help them become productive adults?
Whereas the majority of fauna are operational and autonomous from birth, many don’t even know who their progenitors were! If a just born baby isn’t given some sort of food within a short time after birth, it would not survive… and this goes on in all aspects of its life for years after birth.
In the context of The Explanation, in the first book, Inventory of the Universe, there’s a chapter devoted to this question of the differences between human and animal babies and individuals in general. It shows that there’s a vast difference which we tend to minimize.
But you just can’t get away from the gulf of intelligence that separates animals and man and the paradox that animals are born equipped to face life immediately while babies are born in the exact opposite situation. Babies and children depend on adults, particularly their family, to take care of their every need at a young age, and they develop their autonomy and independence over a period of years. Why?
It has been estimated that on average a 4-year-old child asks some 437 questions a day! Why do children ask questions, sometimes very deep and astonishing ones? On the other hand, to our knowledge, animals never ask questions… they certainly do not develop outside of their natural possibilities.
To be right up front with you, I’m not going to answer that question in this post! I’ll leave you in suspense… for a reason. And that reason is there are umpteen similar questions… many of which are not asked and many which we don’t even think about. These are the big fundamental question with life implications. In the future, I will answer all these questions in our quest for how to have peace and prosperity on Earth.
Today is the 20 November 2014, the 25th anniversary of the ‘Declaration of the Rights of the Child’ adopted in 1989 under the auspices of UNICEF… It is the most ratified treaty of all times with 194 out of 197 ratifications. One of those three non-ratifications is the USA, although they have signed the Declaration. Great advances have been made in child welfare worldwide. But much is left undone and in a sad state of affairs.
We hear about multi-nationals using child-labor in poverty-stricken countries to manufacture clothing for capitalistic rich populations, or kids erring in streets and garbage piles to eek out an existence. We realize there’s much still to be accomplished for children simply to go through the ‘child experience’ that according to their ‘rights’ are being wronged.
Ever asked yourself why children need a ‘child experience?’ Why does it take them about 6-9 months before they can even crawl? More months before they can stand up, wobble and then ultimately walk, only to start running circles around you?
To their credit, UNESCO has dedicated millions of dollars to the distribution of school books in poorer countries to help with education of children. But, in countries like Haiti and others where endemic poverty and illiteracy run wild, parents are not capable of using these material aids. In Haiti it is estimated that only 20% of teachers are qualified to hold such a position. Even in private schools, teachers don’t have the level required to take these little ones and prepare them for their adult life.
In Africa millions of children are affected by war, migration and epidemics (Ebola). Even if they are not physical victims, they are psychological victims. Did you know that if a child’s parents die of a contagious disease, children become collateral victims. These orphans are often excluded from the community because of unwarranted fear by the rest of the population that they are also contagious.
We applaud the ‘Declaration of the Rights of the Child’ and efforts by the UNICEF. They do what they humanly can. But is ‘humanly can’ sufficient?
Ponder a few points from the introduction to ‘Children’s Rights’
– Recalling that, in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the United Nations has proclaimed that childhood is entitled to special care and assistance,
– Convinced that the family, as the fundamental group of society and the natural environment for the growth and well-being of all its members and particularly children, should be afforded the necessary protection and assistance so that it can fully assume its responsibilities within the community,
– Recognizing that the child, for the full and harmonious development of his or her personality, should grow up in a family environment, in an atmosphere of happiness, love and understanding,
– Considering that the child should be fully prepared to live an individual life in society, and brought up in the spirit of the ideals proclaimed in the Charter of the United Nations, and in particular in the spirit of peace, dignity, tolerance, freedom, equality and solidarity,
– Bearing in mind that, as indicated in the Declaration of the Rights of the Child, “the child, by reason of his physical and mental immaturity, needs special safeguards and care, including appropriate legal protection, before as well as after birth”
The ‘Rights’ recognize the role of ‘physical and mental immaturity‘ of children and the need for their development in a proper ‘family environment‘.
The Explanation fully agrees with both these statements. However, they are not ‘Rights’. They are the fundamentals of society. These are the most basic social points. They are the building blocks of humanity.
Ask yourself the real questions: Why is it this way? What is the origin of this worldwide ‘given’. For, no matter where we are on Earth today, families and children are all the same, have the same needs and are trying to accomplish the same thing: Bring up their children and turn them into responsible adults.
We’re on a journey to answer these and many other questions. These are pieces of the puzzle, pieces I’m in the process of turning right side up. Then we’ll begin to assemble them to vision the entire incredible and wonderful picture. Join the mailing list in the right-hand column to help put this amazing puzzle together.
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