Gerald Vest: Don't Give Up the Spirit Child    
 Don't Give Up the Spirit Child6 comments
picture11 Feb 2007 @ 22:34, by Gerald Vest

"Much of our aging, in the negative sense of reduced capacity , is a result of conditioning rather than actual limitation. It is our evolutionary destiny, Montagu says, to lengthen childhood and rescue ourselves from our "mature" ways--before it is too late." (Ashley Montagu, Growing Young).

Growing Young should be required reading for adults, social workers, teachers, parents, elders and other health related professionals. Dr. Montagu describes our development and evolution as human beings as growing in phases rather than of stages as Erickson and others claim. He makes a good case for this, as in stages, as Erickson suggests, one stage has specific challenges that must be met before the child can grow effectively into the next stage. For example, he identifies "Basic Trust" as the first developmental stage related to the quality of nourishment the infant receives from mother and if frustrated or neglected during this early stage, the infant psychologically becomes mistrustful and begins to doubt his/her relations in the world.

On first or second glance, this so called "crisis approach" appears to make sense. However, I believe this crisis is more analytical and built around a psychology model that is limiting in its observations and enlarged with a labeling characteristic that psychiatrists and other clinical professions have adopted to make human development or lack there of, a disease model. In other words, if you don't make it through the stages of development successfully, you are ill, stuck and in need of repair.


Dr. Montagu's thesis in this book is that, "as a consequence of the unique evolutionary history of our species, we are designed to fulfill the bountiful promise of the child; to grow and develop as children, rather than into the kind of adults we have been taught to believe we ought to become." So many of our adult models today are played out in competetive sports and aggressive dramas on tv and in media ads.

By this it is not intended to mean that we are programmed to remain arrested at childhood stages of development, but that we are, by every confirmable measure, designed to continue, throughout our lives, to grow and develop in the traits so conspicuously exhibited by the child. p.121, (Montagu, Growing Young)

Furthermore, it is evident by many observers that we are driven to achieve our best possibilities from birth through all of the phases of becoming a complete and healthy human being. (Professor Montagu defines health as our ability to love, to work, to play, and to think soundly.) "It is the frustration of the child's needs by his incompetent socializers that is principally responsible for the behavior attributed to innate depravity." And, he clearly points out that all the terms related to child development -- fetus, baby, infant, child, adolescent, maturity and old age--are arbitrary concepts with loosely related definitions.

Dr. Montagu is a remarkable and astute observer of human development and has a message for us as adults, especially for those of us identified as old, retired, and stuck in our 'ways.' He reminds us of the healthy attributes that are supposed to be given up as we mature and 'grow older.' In other words, stop enjoying life, laughter, play, learning and adventuring--leave your curiosity and love for life in your playpen.

For me, in addition to learning about "neotaneous drives or needs," he provides us with a more complete description of healthy development. Each of these needs is described so beautifully that we can appreciate the child within us rather than desiring to eliminate this spirit being. I suspect our schools and other institutions that are engaged in teaching and learning programs for children are not familiar with these drives and basic needs. Or, perhaps the adults have failed to "make the equal" with the kids so their relationships are maintained at a superficial level. Why else would our young people (and teachers) be so unhappy in these prison like systems and feel like just ..."Another Brick in the Wall?" (Pink Floyd)

Beyond the usual basic human requirements for living are introduced to us (food, clothing, shelter, touch or physical interaction, sex , fresh air, water, etc) these 26 additional needs will nourish us throughout our lives:

1. The need for love (The child is born not only with the need to be beloved, but with the need to love others)
2. Friendship
3. Sensitivity
4. The need to think soundly
5. The need to know
6. The need to learn
7. The need to work
8. The need to organize
9. Curiosity
10.The sense of wonder
19.The sense of humor
21.Laughter and tears
23.Honesty and trust
24.Compassionate intelligence

Finally, as I started this brief discussion on human development and the development of our spirit child, I want to close by reminding us:

"To 'Grow Young' means to grow in our youthful traits, not to grow out of or to abandon them." We don't have many examples of healthy aging and healthy adults in our society, perhaps because of the forced requirements, beliefs and rules imposed by caregivers, teachers and parents. These impositions of adult related goals to "grow up" and become like them or like other conventional adults who arrived before us, has only worked against the healthy development of children and adults. As my grandkids would remind us: boring, boring, and boring.

If you wish to learn more about this outstanding scientist and remarkable human being, read this two part synopsis on all of his books, his philosophy, his discoveries and his love for humanity and our relationships, inside and out. [link]

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12 Feb 2007 @ 17:46 by jobrown : Go get'em, Jerry! : )
THANK you -once again- for posting something so Life affirming as daring to question the sick "Western Culture" ( which is NOT -just- the American Way, but rather the mental/social inheritance from the Old Babylon via..... Already Moses faught this nonsense way of being.... as did Jesus!.... and so many more!)

I know in my Heart, that we are in the biggest mode of Change -as in Transformation, that this Planet has seen since before the Fall out of Grace (of the Atlantis' Elders) and all the pervertions of REAL Life, that began to take over the Society from there on ,will now -all- be challenged and indeed seen for what they truly are: PERVERTIONS of Divine Truth (about us).The Mainstream Psychology -just like Mainstream "Science" and "Religion" becoming the first ones to be thrown out as such; pervertions, together with the sick monetary SYSTEM. ( there are better as in more JUST and Life affirming Systems to be applied!)

"Grow Young" = go back to where you came from; the State (of Mind) of true Magic, in/to which you (= we all) were born into -and forced out from = all those character qualities in your list, plus the Inborn Life skills (which the perverted soul/mind does not acknowledge at all -or if it does, it only does it as Lip-service/Rhetorics)! From there the step is not that far to FULL Life Mastery as ordained for us (at this particular part of our Cosmic Journey)! This will indeed be/come the next "evolutionary stage" of our entire Society/Consciousness. A step in that direction is to be found here: and then scroll down to "Disclaimer" . I "promise"; you won't be disappointed!

How our Psyche functions determines how we treat Life in our Social "Everyday-Life":

Happy Days to You, Jerry, & your Lovely Family! /// Astrid
( I just HAD to respond to you! : )... )

The kind of people your article describes, tend to be -to whatever degree- victims to Narcissism:, the perverted self.  

12 Feb 2007 @ 20:16 by jerryvest : Thanks, Astrid....your posts are always
filled with interesting discoveries and ways to advance our spirit being. I especially enjoyed the review of the Tarot. Early on I meditated regularly with all of the major arcanas while holding their pose and position and eventually becoming the character represented in the card. Yes, and in that napsac are all the tools for us to achieve our best possible condition, but we are initially blinded by the light of freedom and don't know that we have the four keys to advance our being.

Thanks again for sharing your knowledge, wisdom, love and truth with us. I'm honored that you introduce these vital resources for our participants.

Much love to you and your partner.


13 Feb 2007 @ 00:22 by vaxen : Not blinded...
by the ''light of freedom'' at all, jerry, but rather ''controlled from the cradle to the grave.'' Implanted frtom day one with a totally false value set most never escape this mental prison, this matrix, if you will, of foisted upon us insanity.

Some do escape the prison, though, by going right on through it smiling happily all the way and setting the prisoners free wherever possible.

Many know exactly what and who we are up against. False freedom is just that... false. Know your rights or forever lose them. And you do have rights that are innate and un-a-LIEN-able!

These dead old societies and their progenitors must be confronted head on and whittled down to size. Another word for freedom is responsibility.

Thanks man...  

13 Feb 2007 @ 02:01 by jerryvest : So true, Vaxen...freedom=responsibility.
Yes, humanity and nature are in deep trouble and we can all take responsibility for the conditions we find ourselves in. We will all have to address the serious problems we face as a human family. I once read that everyone was once our parent so we know better. I think we just won't commit ourselves at the deepest levels to change and become conscious human beings--awake, aware and mindful. As we learn in teamwork, the team is equal to the level of its lowest member. And, I don't think anyone really wants to be the lowest. As a new civilization let's do keep everyone informed about our human rights and introduce ways we can improve the quality of our lives, health and relationships.

Thanks for your comments, Vax. Oh, I know that my grandkids are free, but we all know it won't be for long. In the mean time we will enjoy our lives to the fullest--creatively, happy, joyful and free. Do you remember what Fritz Perls meant when he said: "Let's lose our minds and come to our senses?" Best wishes, Jerry

PS We are born free and innocent--The Fool in the first position has all the tools in his/her napsack, but has to get eaten up by the aligator (society, family). The Tarot, for me, shows us (the Fool) the way to re-discover and embody the four paths--knowledge, wisdom, love and truth. Did I tell you how much enjoyment my grandkids and I have had playing with the Tarot?  

5 Mar 2007 @ 18:52 by a-d : ..freedom=responsibility
Ability to respond to Life on Life's terms is indeed where the Freedom lies -if 'you' ask me. : ) I feel so blessed to understand this fundamental Truth about "how" Life works. By understanding this very "thing" guarantees that I never need to resort to the methods used by the Crooks, who quite clearly have NOT grasped this Truth, but still thinks that they have to deceive and cheat and be cruel in any way possible to guarantee their survival!

You know, Jerry, I think your Grand Children are in a very "lucky" Time Space, where they don't need to "lose " as much of their own Divinity as we had to.
The Understanding of Divine Truth is -not only filtering through "all the lies" any longer, but coming down to Earth/our human awareness by the "truckload" . People have had enough of seduction of their Spirit; own God-given (co-)creativity -and are now happily accepting it to return and to replace all the falsities, spread and held in place by the few, who still think that destruction of the Public will bring TRUE Goodness to THEM; the perpetrators (of that evil)! Nor will their attitude to Life bring them what ALL Living Things want the most: LIFE everlasting, not only on "the Other Side" as it were -but here!
Just ask your Grand kids whether it FEELS more natural to them that all living things should live forever -or whether they should die... and you'll be told the Truth - I am pretty confident, that if allowed, they will reach into their own Hearts, deep enough, where they can easily access the Truth of this statement.
Forever young; rejuvenated daily is a NATURAL PROCESS -which if allowed to do its work in us it will! The first step in this direction is to understand the LOGIC in/of it! As you can imagine; my years as an RN were not easy! ... : )But I never gave up my Knowing -and today there's millions on this Planet, who can see/understand this very Life-essential TRUTH. I love Rod Stewart's Song: "Forever Young" .

If you ever have some moments of "idle time" : ) I warmly recommend to you some of the most incredible books ever written: "Life and Teaching of the Masters of the Far East" by Baird T. Spalding (five -six) books total of which vol. 2 and 3 really are the very sharpest ones. They were published 1905 by De Vorss Publishing Company, who still is the sole publisher of this Work. Keep the year of publishing in mind; because there are things stated that in today's world are a little off...or at least as we see /understand the world/science in general (still??? ) Today. But then again: Future might prove the books right in ALL their claims/aspects -eventually! Remains to be seen.
I personally think, we have entered a phase in 'Science'/ Social knowledge, where we start -with GOOD REASONS - to question EVERYTHING we learned during these last 6000 years of Seduction; INTENTIONAL MIS-LEADING. The aging being just one of them, but one of the most baffling ones -which even the Mainstream Science admits, since 'aging' should NOT occur at all -according what we know to be true about the physiology of our body!.... If the Mainstream Scientists can see this with the clarity they do; then 'you' know something is seriously wrong -which indeed is the case!  

5 Mar 2007 @ 20:22 by jerryvest : Yes, yes, and yes, Astrid...
I will look for the books by Baird T. Spalding. Often some of our best resources have been available to us, but so many people believe that only the newer books hold truth. I feel the same about Ashley Montagu and the depth of his knowlege, yet few people know of him.

Another book and program that means much to me since I have been faithfully using Oscar Ichazo's exercise program for the past 30 years and also introduce these "Master Level Exercise - Psychocalisthenics"( in my classes every day so that they can sustain health and well-being. As Oscar identifies in his book(s), we can stop the process of decay, decrepitude, and senility as part of our natural life as human beings. He shows us that it is unknown in the animal world and with wildlife. Furthermore, he notes that we accept old age as a fate from which nobody seems to be free. I don't wish to boast, but I can tell you that as a 72 year old who is "growing young," my energy level and physical abilities are much better than most of the younger students who enroll in my classes.

As I recommend to our students, if they maintain daily health practices that support their whole being -- physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually, they have a great chance to have a happy, healthy and fulfilling life. Their relationships will improve as well if they balance their lives with integrative health practices.

Thanks again for your contributions to our discussions. Jerry  

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