Wednesday, September 21, 2011

"What is connectedness?..feeling in your bones that you are not alone..there is a hand for you in the dark.” E. Hallowell

Oklahoma City 1995, NOT NYC 9/11/2001
Time again for Edward Hallowell's idea of "connectedness."
"While ambition drives us to achieve, connectedness is my word for the force that urges us to ally, to affiliate, to enter into mutual relationships, to take strength and to grow through cooperative behavior.

"What is connectedness? It is a sense of being a part of something larger than oneself. It is a sense of belonging, or a sense of accompaniment. It is that feeling in your bones that you are not alone. It is a sense that, no matter how scary things may become, there is a hand for you in the dark. "

[p. 196] This is Edward M. Hallowell’s definition of “connectedness” from an essay of the same name: "Connectedness," pp. 193-209, 
 in Finding the Heart of the Child, Association of Independent Schools in New England, Inc., 1993.

Steven W. Gilbert, December 31, 1995, AAHESGIT [later, TLT-SWG] listserv.

As I neared home Tuesday night I saw two policeman talking
with my wife in front of our house. 

I learned that someone
had broken in while we were away during the
day. As we searched through the house, it emerged that very
little had been taken -- mostly small electronic appliances
and loose change. But that night my nine-year old daughter
couldn't get to sleep in her own room, where someone had
taken a few of her things and made a mess of toys and
clothes. She just didn't feel safe.

Last night we went to a neighborhood meeting to learn about
organizing a "Neighborhood Watch" group from some people who
have already done so nearby. This meeting was well-attended
and had been scheduled before our own burglary. We learned
how to walk around our neighborhood and spot and report
"suspicious" people, activities, or conditions.

And this morning I continue to read reports of what happened
in Oklahoma City and how people there are having so much
trouble regaining their ability to continue their daily lives
without frequent feelings of fear and mistrust. I felt that I had
been given a tiny, bitter taste of what these people must be living

["Oklahoma City bombing ...was the most destructive act of terrorism on American soil" until 9/11/2001 - "Oklahoma City Bombing," Wikipedia]

I'm worried about how we can re-build our world to enable
more people to live their lives under conditions of trust and
safety -- conditions where each of us can be part of
meaningful communities, where we can be connected in ways
that matter. How can our efforts to make information
technology more useful in education contribute?

Let me offer one short quote and a chapter from a book on
related matters.

Robert D. Putnam in the _Journal of Democracy_, Volume 6,
Number 1, January, 1995, pages 65-78, says on page 76 of his
article "Bowling Alone: America's Declining Social Capital":

"What will be the impact, for example, of electronic networks
on social capital? My hunch is that meeting in an electronic
forum is not the equivalent of meeting in a bowling alley --
or even in a saloon -- but hard empirical research is needed.
What about the development of social capital in the
workplace? Is it growing in counterpoint to the decline of
civic engagement, reflecting some social analogue of the
first law of thermodynamics -- social capital is neither
created nor destroyed, merely redistributed? Or do the
trends described in this essay represent a deadweight loss?"

What follows is from the book: _Finding the Heart of the Child: Essays on Children, Families, and Schools_
by Edward M. Hallowell, M.D.
and Michael G. Thompson, Ph.D.

Pages 193-209

Edward Hallowell is a psychiatrist who works often with
children and schools. I strongly recommend the entire book.

To order a copy of this book, please contact:
Association of Independent Schools in New England
E-mail: | Phone: 781-843-8440 

This chapter reproduction and distribution via AAHESGIT on
the Internet was authorized in 1995 by Richard Barbieri, Executive
Director, Association of Independent Schools in New England.


Photo of "The bombed remains of automobiles with the bombed Federal Building in the background. The military is providing around the clock support since a car bomb exploded inside the building on Wednesday, April 19, 1995." by Staff Sergeant Preston Chasteen, 21 April 1995, Source (F-3203-SPT-95-000023-XX-0198)

Permission "This image is a work of a U.S. military or Department of Defense employee, taken or made during the course of an employee's official duties. As a work of the U.S. federal government, the image is in the public domain."

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